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Thousands Throng Namugongo Shrines For Martyrs Day Celebrations

Thousands of pilgrims have converged at the Catholic Martyrs shrine in Namugongo to celebrate this year’s Uganda Martyrs’ Day animated by Gulu Archdiocese.    

By 6 am, thousands were seen queuing from as far as Kyaliwajjala while many others were seen trekking from different routes leading to the Shrine. Most routes are being manned by a ring of joint security team.   


As multitudes continue to press to enter the Shrine, hundreds are wading through the large crowds to find their way out of the shrine. The situation is less similar to the one at the Anglican Shrine at Nakiyanja.   


According to the organisers, more than 5,000 foreign pilgrims from around the world have attended the celebrations.  Some are from the USA, the Common Market for East and Southern Africa, South Africa Development Community and the European Union amongst others.    


At the Catholic Shrine, the day’s program indicates that the Eucharistic celebration will be led by the most Reverend Dr John Baptist Odama, the archbishop of Gulu. They will starts with a procession from the Basilica.    


At the Anglican Shrine, the service is expected to be presided over by the Archbishop of Uganda Stanley Ntagali while the archbishop of Kenya Jackson Ole Sapit is expected to be the main preacher.


There is display of cultural diversity and heritage at the two shrines with many wearing their cultural attires and ornaments – all in unison to pay homage to the Uganda Martyrs.    


The Uganda Martyrs is a group of young Christian converts killed for their faith between the 1885 and 1887 on the orders of Kabaka Daniel Basamulaekere Mwanga II of Buganda Kingdom. The king took offence in the conversion of his servants by the missionaries and ordered that they be exterminated. 

-URN

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